I woke up with a hangover.
From Halloween, that is. In countless ways, my body was telling me, Lauren, you’ve had enough. Maybe it was all the cheap candy or my fatigued feet, but the message was painfully clear.
I’ve got to start taking care of myself again.
It is November, which – if you’re an aspiring writer – means one thing: NaNoWriMo. But let’s be clear, I can’t add a book to my already-too-full plate. The pressure, I’m quite sure, would be damaging.
So I think I’ll write for fun. My goal for this month is to write a new blog entry every day. Rain or shine. Inspiration or doldrum.
Which makes me think of running, the one healthful activity that has been a consistent thread in the fabric of my adult years – regardless of weather or mood. Running keeps me sane; it silences the dark voices in my head. As a bonus, it helps me balance peace with reality when I step onto the scale.
But lately even my passions have taken a backseat to stress. I don’t prioritize sleep, my diet is a pendulum, and I frankly fight slowing down far too often.
For myself, I am realizing that the hardest part of adulthood is learning to be content in the present. Really, something happens when you turn 30, and the world is illuminated by a completely different light.
Your family’s dog passes.
Your friends get cancer.
Your vote suddenly matters.
And happiness, as it turns out, is less about your income and more about rediscovering the innocent child you once were – the soul only little people can release.
This month I want to take time to roll in the leaves with my children – once the mosquitoes and fire ants finally die. I want to listen more and speak less. I want to savor hardship and be grateful for its fruit.
And, in the midst of fragile leaves, I’ll be writing words.
The kind that heal and forgive.
One Year Ago: When a Train Rings the Bell